As the Democrats gear up for their impeachment hearings, and the networks all prepare to pre-empt their regular programming to help the Democrats ruin President Trump, there is one thing we know. The networks are always and forever going to try and beat this president senseless with negative coverage.
It’s out of control.
The latest study by the Media Research Center’s Rich Noyes finds that during the six weeks since Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced the start of the inquiry (September 24 through November 5), the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts have shoveled out 398 minutes of coverage on the Ukraine scandal. Important, yes, but it’s more than three-fifths of all administration news during this time period. It neatly resembles their fiendish obsession with their last fake-news chapter: Trump and Russia.
Here’s what’s truly amazing. The tone of overall coverage was 96 percent negative. That makes the long-running average of 90 percent look good.
The negativity is both bombastic and shameless. On October 29, CBS Evening News anchor Norah O’Donnell touted “bombshell impeachment testimony” in her opening tease, then turned to their first report. “We're going to begin with that damning impeachment testimony today from a key witness.” On the same night, NBC reporter Hallie Jackson also enthusiastically promoted “bombshell testimony” from “a firsthand witness to the explosive conversation that ignited the impeachment inquiry.”
This allegedly dynamite testimony was behind closed doors and there was no audio or video, but the networks sold it anyway.
Not only that, but Joe Biden bizarrely received the best press of his campaign (71% positive), as reporters robotically repeated the mantra that “there is no evidence of any wrongdoing” by Joe Biden or his profiteering son, Hunter, in Ukraine. Trump bad, Bidens good.
And they have no interest in pursuing the one question Republicans keep asking: What did Hunter Biden do, in return for 50 grand per month?
These networks can’t find time for any good news for this president, or for the country. Despite record highs in the stock market and a fifty-year low in the unemployment rate, Donald Trump’s handling of the economy was almost completely squashed. Facts about the booming economy drew just 4 minutes, 6 seconds of coverage during these six weeks. That’s less than one percent of all Trump administration news.
Here’s the one that puts everything in its proper perspective. ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was the world’s most dangerous terrorist. Was.
The U.S. commander-in-chief took him out. How was Trump’s role in it covered? The tone was 67 percent negative! They criticized him for anything they could find, from his refusal to brief congressional leaders to his swaggering commentary on how this foul terrorist died disgracefully by blowing himself up.
NBC correspondent Courtney Kube speculated: “It’s possible that President Trump’s bellicose language about the manner in which he died could actually inspire some ISIS fighters to retaliate.” And it’s possible that NBC’s perennially bellicose language against the Republicans could backfire.
So, let’s repeat. The economy is going gangbusters. We beheaded the leadership of ISIS. And President Trump’s overall evening-news coverage was 96 percent negative. How can they look into the Teleprompters with straight faces?